Just some brief notes from Pirate City, where the Pirates’ class A teams took on Toronto’s. Chad Kuhl and Mitch Keller started. Kuhl threw six innings in the high A game, but that’s misleading because he stayed on for four or five outs in most innings. There was, I think, one run that scored after there were three or four outs, but that’s about all. Kuhl got a whole lot of quick outs, mostly on the ground.
Mitch Keller got roughed up some in the low A game, including three runs in a first inning in which he got only one out before it was rolled over. He was more effective after that. One problem was Vladimir Guerrero, son of Vladimir Guerrero, who turned 18 a few days ago and who apparently is incapable of hitting anything other than lasers. He hit a liner with two on in the first that went right into Kevin Mahala’s glove at short, and then right out because it was hit too hard to be stopped by anything made of any substance known to man. Next time up he hit a leadoff triple high off the left field fence, but Keller got a couple of strikeouts and stranded him.
Maybe the most interesting pitcher on the day was Jacob Brentz, a left-handed reliever who came from Seattle in the Arquimedes Caminero trade. Brentz came with a reputation for throwing hard, but today he sat in the upper-90s, hitting 99 several times and 100 at least once. He was wild, but got out of his inning with a double play ball.
Victor Ngoepe (you may have heard of his brother) has been playing with the class A teams, in fact with the high A team today, even though he was only in the GCL last year. That may mean they regard him more as an organizational player, but he can definitely play a legitimate shortstop.